Dmitry's story is one of jaw-drops, twists, turns and dreams. Born a soldier, grown a policeman, turned carpenter and then 3D modeller, we are fascinated by the range of experiences Dmitry has lived in his life and we are impatient to share them with you.
If this were a normal interview of ours, we would usually employ at least three introductory paragraphs trying to capture the point of the Member Spotlight below. But Dmitry Pushkarev isn't an ordinary person. He's an incredibly humble, wonderfully nice person, and by living in his little big world, he was able to find the formula of happiness: living well with small things and self-realisation.
Without further ado, we will leave you to his own words below – an extract of the amazing document we received from Dmitry. We hope he will forgive us for having to cut some of his story – as fascinating as it was – and keeping only the most impactful moments.
Where are you from and how did you get into the industry?
For me, the creative process began, perhaps, as a child. I was born and raised in a huge country called the Soviet Union. Despite many negative aspects regarding the domestic and foreign policies of my country, in the USSR state power took care of the development of the younger generation, providing opportunities for comprehensive development, including creative development. And all this was at the expense of state money.
After college, I was sent to the army for 2 years. In the USSR, all men over 18 years old were required to serve 2 years in the army or 3 years in the navy. When I returned home, after completing my military service, there was no workplace for me at the enterprises that produced electronics. I could not find a job in my specialty. In this situation, I found it acceptable to accept the invitation of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of the USSR, sent to me by mail, for admission to the police service. I left the police service only after 12 years, as the head of the department and the rank of senior lieutenant, when I felt the possibility of self-realisation.
After a while I realised all I wanted was 'pure creativity'
I enthusiastically engaged in the manufacture of custom-made furniture, independently developed design and constructive solutions, selected the colour scheme, and offered clients interior sketches. With greed and great interest, I mastered new software products for myself - AutoCAD, 3D Max, Corel, Photoshop, because this helped to promote the business. I entered the construction department of the Ural State Technical University. I took lessons at a private art school. This went on for several years. But it still wasn’t enough.
At some point, I realised that I wanted 'pure creativity', that is, I wanted to minimise all the components of my activity that were not directly related to creativity. I did not want to do any more room measurements, searching for suppliers of materials and furniture fittings, maintenance of technological equipment, logistics operations and installation works.
I searched for new ways for further self-realisation and I found out that there were programs for digital sculpting. It was exactly what I had dreamed about for so long! I got the opportunity to use the fantastic capabilities of a personal computer and freely create! For several years now I have been working in these programs and do not cease to be surprised and admire them!
Where are you based now and who do you work for?
Now I work with several companies in Russia and abroad as a freelancer. I live and work in Yekaterinburg (Russia). I develop design and create 3D models for the manufacture of souvenir products, products from stone, metal, wood, polymeric materials.
Unfortunately, in Russia there are not so many opportunities for creativity and self-realisation. I think this is due to the difficulties in developing private business in my country. Our state, unfortunately, does too little to support entrepreneurs. But the Internet has shattered those boundaries.
Explain your creative style and process
If we talk about how my creative process is built, then, perhaps, this is a traditional scheme of actions, consisting of several stages:
- The idea (what kind of product you need or want to do). Sometimes the idea belongs to my customer and I continue to work on a given topic. Sometimes an idea just comes to my mind and requires further implementation.
- The conceptual solution. This is the most interesting stage of work for me. I think it is at this stage that creativity truly comes to.
- Study of the details of the concept of the future product. This stage is also of great value to me, because it is here that new knowledge and skills related to the technical side of the project are acquired.
- Assembly of the product. An exciting moment. All the details and individual parts of the future product are ready, and very soon I will be able to see how the model I created in assembly and the final version look like.
- Visualisation. I simply want to show it to everyone!
How has technology affected the way you work (if at all)?
At 15, after school, I, like most guys, went to get an education. In the 80s, personal computers appeared in the world - it seemed to me some kind of fantasy! I was very interested in this area of knowledge, and I began studying at the College of Radio Engineering. However, despite the interest in computers, sometimes, just like a magnet, I was drawn to traditional creativity - I wanted to draw something and create wood products. I just love the smell of fresh wood shavings!
But the fantastic world of computers was tempting and interesting to me. I remember how popular, printed on dot-matrix printers, were the images of the Mona Lisa, consisting of keyboard characters. Such portraits hung on the walls in many government institutions, research institutes, production facilities of factories. Now it seems naive and funny. I could not imagine the opportunities that we have now. This is surprising, but now computers really allow you to create anything, amazing works of art with just a screen and a few peripherals.
If you could change one thing about the industry what would it be?
If I could change something in the design and 3D modelling industry, perhaps it would be an expansion of opportunities for communication between customers and artists, an increase in the number of open creative contests for designers (it’s cool that we now have Creativepool!). I think that fresh ideas will always be interesting and will always be able to surprise.
What’s your secret to staying inspired and motivated?
Honestly, I have enough of my own design ideas, but the ideas of customers are also often very exciting and interesting. In addition, I really like to watch the works of modern and old masters. With interest I study literature on the history of sculpture and architecture, folk art of different peoples and ethnic groups, I am interested in world history.
During the creation of each new product, the feeling of magic and fabulousness of the ongoing process does not leave me. Perhaps all this is the source of my inspiration. Unfortunately, now I don’t have enough time to implement all my ideas, but I’m not upset, I make sketches and drafts and put them in a box. Hopefully someday I can implement this.
If you weren’t in your current industry, what would you be doing?
I can not imagine myself outside of creativity or needlework. If I hadn’t done design and modelling on a computer, I probably would have done woodcarving in my little country house (if not for sale, then just for myself, as before). Now I also work with wood on my country house, but due to lack of time, this is mainly carpentry.
What’s the work achievement you’re most proud of?
Now, perhaps, my greatest achievement is receiving opportunities to employ my creativity, and I am glad that the results of my work are in demand. But, my God, how much more I want to do!
How do you recharge away from the office?
My country house with a small plot of land is a great place for outdoor activities. Me and my beloved wife, Irina, are growing an excellent crop there.
What advice would you give to other aspiring creatives in the industry who are looking for commissions?
Never give up your favourite occupation, and you will surely achieve the desired result, find harmony and happiness. Practice your work as often as possible. Work must be absolutely loved and nothing else. Passion shines through your creations and brings to earnings. My path to creativity was quite long and I am a little sorry that I did not come to this earlier. I will be glad if my story and my example will be able to support you if something does not work out right away.
I think that I have not yet reached the top creative heights and, of course, I still have to learn, think and create a lot, but the main thing is the pleasure that I get from my favourite business. I would very much like for you to be the same
What’s your one big hope for the future of the creative industries?
I am sure that in the future, creative professions will be in demand no less than in the past or present. I think that beauty, in all its manifestations, will always be needed. And that means, guys, we have something to strive for, for which it is worth living and working